Golden Post Awards 2022: Winners

Our annual award program honors outstanding use of social media by government agencies in the United States. Winners were announced on March 30 at a special awards ceremony during the hybrid 2022 Government Social Media Conference in Dallas, Texas.

People who manage social media in government are in one of the most difficult fields for social media professionals. The Golden Post Awards is a free program dedicated to recognizing their hard work, which frequently involves high stakes, high expectations and limited resources in facilitating open communication with the public. 

Category: Social Media Professional of the Year

Winner: Kaitlin Keeler, Oakland County, Michigan

Congratulations to Kaitlin Keeler for being recognized as the Social Media Professional of the Year! The award honors a social media professional in government who is known in the space for their work, while being committed to supporting and teaching fellow communicators. Kaitlin's mission for many years has been to ensure every social media professional has the skills and confidence they need in championing their agency's social media policy. She has worked tirelessly through workshops, GSMCON sessions, webinars and more to assist her fellow colleagues. Kaitlin is a long-time GSM supporter, having served on the very first GSMCON steering committee and has been deeply involved in the community ever since. 

Previous recipients include Chris Hsiung, Mary Jo Flynn and Kristen Waggener, well-known advocates in the socialgov space.

Follow Kaitlin Keeler on Twitter.

Category: Social Media Leadership Award

Winner: Jordan Gilgenbach, City of Minneapolis, MN

We’re proud to announce Jordan Gilgenbach as the recipient of the 2022 Social Media Leadership Award! This recognition is focused on an individual who is known for being the champion of an important area within the profession. Jordan’s work as a government trendsetter on TikTok has encouraged many others to join the TikTok movement, and he has personally worked with many to educate how to best use the platform to both educate and entertain.

Past winners include Emily Allen Lucht.

Follow Jordan Gilgenbach on Twitter and the City of Minneapolis on TikTok.

Category: Social Media Team of the Year

Winner: Transportation Security Administration (TSA)

The team at TSA does incredible work with a very challenging arena for government–handling customer service on a large scale. Team TSA, led by Janis Burl, has over a dozen team members and is faced with a staggering number of up to 5,000 questions daily. Their social media posts are informative, creative, humorous and sometimes thought provoking, all while answering critical questions from travelers. Hats off to the TSA social media team for their amazing work!

Past winners include Team Gilbert of Gilbert, Arizona.

Transportation Security Agency (TSA) on Facebook | Twitter | Website

Category: Nextdoor Neighborly Award

Winner: City of Houston, Texas

Nextdoor awarded the City of Houston, Texas with the Nextdoor Neighborly Award for their exceptional use of this platform and how they embrace best practices to have the PIO office take the lead and manage Nextdoor for their agency, have multiple departments posting, creating engaging, quality posts driving real value.

City of Houston, Texas on Nextdoor | Facebook | Twitter | Website

Category: Facebook Favorite

Winner: Tennessee Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

Meta awarded the Tennessee Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities for their Facebook Favorite Award! The department was chosen for how they embody not only our best practices on Facebook, but exemplify what it means to bring the world closer together and create impact in the state of Tennessee. They created a campaign designed to provide a platform for people with disabilities and their families to share their experiences and voices in a meaningful way, educating the community and providing a space for empathy and engagement across the state in a time when the world seems forever divisive.

Tennessee Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities on Facebook | Twitter | Website

Category: Best Social Media Customer Service

Winner: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

The robust customer service-driven response of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on social media is not only consistent, thorough and swift, but goes above and beyond by encouraging curiosity in their audience, which they say they “serve them by focusing on 5 elements: mission and a tangible vision for change; listening to diverse stakeholders and practicing empathy; remaining curious and seeking continual improvement; embracing risk and fostering resilience; building partnerships.” This all-encompassing approach to customer service embodies what socialgov should strive for in serving its customers and audiences. 

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on Facebook | Twitter | Website

Category Finalists:

  • Brazos River Authority, Texas
  • Camano Island Fire and Rescue, Washington
  • City of Long Beach, California
  • Michigan Department of Transportation

Category: Best Nextdoor Presence

Winner: City of Battle Creek, Michigan

The City of Battle Creek, Michigan exceptionally uses the platform to focus on inclusivity by sharing emergency information in multiple languages and engaging residents. They fully use Nextdoor in their community as it’s intended - to communicate and engage with people at their neighborhood level.

City of Battle Creek, Michigan on Nextdoor | Facebook | Twitter | Website

Category Finalists:

  • Maricopa County, Arizona
  • Orange County Fire Authority, California
  • Stafford County Government, Virginia
  • Town of Davie, Florida

Category: Best Use of Short Form Video

Winner: Delaware County Board of Commissioners, Ohio

Delaware County Board of Commissioners, Ohio uses video to speak to tourism, economic development, quality of life, annual reports, resilience and their response to COVID. To quote a judge “It just hit so many layers.” The video was made to address concerns and provide visual proof that we have not only survived some incredible challenges, but we have continued to grow and maintain the quality of life that Delaware County is renowned for.

Watch the winning video.

Delaware County Board of Commissioners, Ohio on Facebook | Twitter | Website

Category Finalists:

  • Central Utah Water Conservancy District
  • Howard County Police Department, Maryland
  • Southlake Police and Fire Department, Texas

Category: Best Use of Long Form Video

Winner: Williamson County, Texas

The judges were impressed with Williamson County, Texas’ video because of the incredible story they told! The lyrics of the song, the incredible singing and the simple, but artistic filming made their video stand out. Just as important as voice is in times of fun and sharing daily successes, it’s crucial to develop that connection with your audience so that your message will be amplified when there is a crisis. 

Watch the winning video.

Williamson County, Texas on Facebook | Twitter | Website

Category Finalists:

  • Delaware County Board of Commissioners, Ohio
  • Southlake Police and Fire, Texas
  • West Metro Fire Rescue, Colorado

Category: Best Use of Social Media in an Emergency

Winner: Miami-Dade Fire Rescue

This monumental tragedy of the Surfside Building Collapse Emergency Response garnered international attention. The judges felt Miami-Dade Fire Rescue truly excelled in telling the story of the emergency and honoring the victims in this tragedy. Their messages were clear, consistent and inclusive of their entire audience -- you cannot ask for more during an emergency event.

Miami-Dade Fire Rescue on Facebook | Twitter | Website

Category Finalists:

  • City of North Port, Florida
  • Fort Worth Fire Department
  • U.S. Food and Drug Administration
  • Washington State Department of Transportation

Category: Best Facebook Presence

Winner: Graham Fire and Rescue, Washington 

Graham Fire and Rescue, Washington’s Facebook Page displayed the perfect combination of professionalism, engagement and appropriate humor. Their page went above and beyond in providing information and context while remaining highly engaged and responsive with their audience.

Graham Fire and Rescue, Washington on Facebook | Twitter | Website

Category Finalists:

  • City of Grand Rapids Parks and Recreation, Michigan
  • City of Sugar Land, Texas
  • City of Wilmington, North Carolina
  • Tennessee Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities 

Category: Best Podcast

Winner: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

The unique niche the U.S. Fish and Wildlife’s podcast, Fish of the Week, fills is its detail to the biology of America’s fishes through the lens of cultural fishing practices and connections. It balances a mix of subject matter experts in the field (including the hosts) with guest from all walks of life, humor, and respect of all the fishes and diversity of people who depend on fish for sustenance, tradition, recreation, inspiration, and livelihoods. It’s a consistently delivered government podcast that focuses on inclusivity and human-fish connections.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on Facebook | Twitter | Website | Podcast

Category Finalists:

  • City of Winchester, Virginia Police Department
  • Mississippi Department of Transportation
  • Nevada Department of Wildlife
  • Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency 

Category: Best Instagram Presence

Winner: City of McKinney, Texas

City of McKinney, Texas effectively educates its residents and engages them beyond standard posts. Their use of Instagram Stories was stellar, creative and engaging, and they mastered how to be both informative and memorable. Rather than a post that lists 10 items you can recycle, they created Trash Talk, a series of trash and recycling reels that answer commonly asked questions by using viral audio and humor, allowing them to get important messaging across in a quick sound-bite-style that residents enjoy and remember. 

City of McKinney, Texas on Instagram | Facebook | Twitter | Website

Category Finalists:

  • City of Fort Collins, Colorado
  • City of Georgetown Convention and Visitors Bureau, Texas
  • City of Tampa, Florida
  • State of Michigan - Michigan State Parks

Category: Best LinkedIn Presence

Winner: City of Tampa, Florida

City of Tampa, Florida’s LinkedIn presence allowed the culture of its city to shine. Their remarkable story-telling ability made the judges want to work for or, at least visit, their community. Their commitment to inclusivity was clear and their audience is consistently engaged with content, including, celebrating employee accomplishments, recruitment, sharing city news, behind-the-scenes look, representing your values and more.  

City of Tampa, Florida on LinkedIn | Facebook | Twitter | Website

Category Finalists:

  • City of Dubuque, Iowa
  • Turlock Irrigation District, California

Category: Best Twitter Presence

Winner: Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation

Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation team’s responsiveness and engagement is what really impressed the judges. In addition, their comprehensive social media strategy and use of Twitter’s accessibility features made your entry stand out above the rest. Their organic growth through the platform is impressive and representative of the hard work their team puts in. 

Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation on Twitter | Facebook | Website

Category Finalists:

  • Maricopa County, Arizona
  • National Human Genome Research Institute
  • Salt Lake Health Department, Utah
  • Washington State Department of Transportation

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